2016 Mercedes-Benz GLS 500 Quick Review

By Alex Inwood, 27 Apr 2016 Car Reviews

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2016 Mercedes-Benz GLS 500 Quick Review

Mercedes-Benz has updated its largest SUV, which now sports a new name, new look and an updated interior spacious enough to seat seven adults.

TELL ME ABOUT THIS CAR

Previously known as the GL, this new version of Mercedes-Benz’s full-size, seven-seat SUV is now called Mercedes-Benz GLS. It boasts updated styling for a more aggressive appearance, a more powerful V8 engine and is genuinely vast inside.

STRENGTHS

  • Space is the number one strength of the GLS. In the world of luxury seven-seat SUVs the GLS is one of the biggest and it makes full use of its room. The luxurious interior is open and comfortable, and the third row is big enough to fit adults. All of the seats fold electrically too.
  • Its V8 engine is refined, powerful and sounds great
  • It mightn’t be beautiful, but the GLS is certainly striking to look at. And it looks and feels expensive

WEAKNESS

  • The interior feels old. Mercedes has added a new steering wheel, new instrument cluster and a larger 8.0-inch touch screen, but the basic structure of the GLS’s cabin is dated. This is especially obvious against newer rivals like the Audi Q7 and Volvo XC90 which trump the Mercedes for interior design and quality.
  • It feels enormous to drive. Obviously the GLS isn’t going to handle like a sportscar, but you’re constantly aware of its substantial size and weight
  • It’s expensive. A starting price of $161,900 for this V8 powered GLS 500 means affordability isn’t a strong suit

ANY RIVALS I SHOULD ALSO CONSIDER?

If you’re looking for a large luxury SUV that can carry seven people in comfort, then the Audi Q7 and Volvo XC 90 are both better to drive and significantly cheaper. You should also consider a Range Rover, which has a brilliant interior and is more capable off road.